The “Design Brief”

I’m thinking, I just signed up for a subscription, so I should probably check my inbox for those ‘welcome and thank you for registering with such and such’ to try and put a stamp on my loyalty. Soon as I hit refresh, there it was, my major advance, could this be it though?

It’s 930 am and I’m deeply embedded in them sheets, I cannot say I’m resting because I have been staring at this little screen since 745, juggling from app to app, updating stuff. I have no early appointments so why not. It’s a Thursday and my long weekend is underway, but I’m a creative, #NoDaysOff, if I’m not sketching I’m tweeting, if I’m not on CS5 (creative suite 5) I’m eating. My life.

I have never felt such joy, my pulse increased at the sight of an email, apt to make me break into a sweat with excitement, my vision… blurred.

I jumped out of bed headed straight to the bathroom, while in there, little voices in my head kept saying “reply them back, you didn’t think they would get back to you”, “this is bigger than you, you won’t be able to pull it off”. They say follow your instincts, but this… I’m unable to can, I can’t, stupid inner voices! I’m doing this with or without you! (that’s me talking to my voices, weird).

Finally I opened the email and me being such a time, I thought I would be required to submit in a weeks time maybe, but it turns out I have two months of squeezing out my creative juices. (Yes that’s the first thing I checked) the “deadline”. I love work, I sit on my workstation and stop. So I decide I should get right on with it, I can’t waste time plus it will help me a great deal doing it now since I’m in the right mood, a little bit flow of inspiration kicks in. I can almost see the final product in my head, how it will look, how it will impact the viewer and most importantly how it will get me to that seat, I have a thing for chairs.(ambition).

After doing some research, well the interweb can be such a waste sometimes, this needs my brain. So I grab a pen and start doodling, my sketches never look close to what I have in mind, so unconvincing. Four scamps and going strong I can see the light, heading to my desktop I will need a little bit of twitching. A few more mouse clicks and a thousand ctrl+Zs (undos), I’m not getting anywhere. I start to crumble. Thinking, tomorrow is another day. Fresh ideas. A whole new me.

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Drawing the line


A month ago if you were to ask me if I could be able to handle a variety of work, my answer would have been: I ought to be able to. I have had six jobs in two weeks… I’m a freelancer.

I guess business was good. It’s almost as if clients have a satellite connected to your desktop, tracking your workday and decide to shower you with loads, in a very short space of time. Can you design this for me and have it ready tomorrow morning, I have a presentation at nine? You don’t need a brief I trust you! I want this logo to have a little boy on a swing holding a grenade…(my mind, waiting to explode) *Sigh*. But sometimes you have to work your way to create from briefs that, on the surface, don’t really appear to be that creative themselves.

In most cases, time allowed to complete the work given becomes inversely proportional to the time taken by client to work out what to complain about. That’s when you realize, a client who knows exactly what they want is worse than one that has no idea. As an artist, drawing the line and knowing that everything has to be done immediately, deadlines are incredibly important unless a client has to provide materials, extra information or approve work. Don’t get me wrong, I love what I do, I love the rush, it excites me as much as it is distressing.

Everything is fine until  they all cease to exist when you need them most.

My most recent client, my former boss, whom I do all his work, trusts me with all his might. Simply because I carry the loyalty of a hufflepuff. I struggle to say no to him
(Weakness). Well it takes me back to 2009, when I first started working with him. He needed someone to operate an 8000s designJet, which I knew nothing about. Him on the other hand had no experience whatsoever about the work he was doing, yet he was unbelievably blessed with the right resources that could have taken him where he wanted to be. Sadly not (Well, let me leave it at that).

During that time I frequented his office, during and after my classes to learn and master this piece, or rather large machinery. A few weeks later, working as the designer and the assistant machine operator for his company. I would like to believe I can handle any kind of machine with less effort, finding my way very easily.

Which is something I’m not doing very well as to finding clients, and not just clients but the ‘right’ clients. It goes to show that putting a portfolio out there won’t make its magic alone and client referrals won’t do any justice either. Note to self… GET ON YOUR BEHIND AND GO Make yourself noticed – in a good way.

Now that’s ambitions of a willionaire.

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